Every year I sign up for the annual Bee Buzz Run. It's an annual fundrasing race to help renovate the Bee States Ballroom in Bee, Nebraska. You have the option to run one mile - or four miles. I tried the one mile last year. It was fun and it was short. I thought I had time to stretch and prep but I lost track of time. I thought I had time to head to the restroom and to do some final wardrobe adjustments. I heard the announcer shoot the starting gun, and I quickly made a detour from the line in the restroom to the group of runners headed across the starting line.
As I made my way around the corner and down the pavement, I thought "No problem! I got this." I made my way around the last corner and came sprinting down the homestretch to the finish line. I thought I was doing great, until I realized that my sprinting was more of a jog. As I neared the finish line I was passed by an older man dressed head to toe in a bumblebee costume…talking on a cell phone.
So this year when registration opened for the run, I thought "No problem! I got this." I was able to get my sister to sign up with me. I wanted to battle the one mile again - she had bigger hopes for us. She talked me into doing the 4-mile (gravel road and a few hills) race. I've done the 4-mile race two years prior. I thought yeah, I could do it again. It would be nice to see the two accordion players sitting in the back of their pickup playing Polka music as we ran past them. They would sit on the first corner and then the last corner - playing away on their instruments.
I signed up for the 4-mile and spent a few days running on the gravel roads back home to practice getting used to the new texture. Since costumes were encouraged and everyone dressed up in years past, I decided to make a bumblebee costume of my own. The weather forecast was sketchy at best. It was to be gloomy 40s and rain. "No problem! I got this."
So come race day, I get to the starting area. It is freezing. It is raining. It is windy. The gun goes off, and my sister and I start our 4-mile adventure. I make it out to the blacktop and pass the first corner. No accordion players; no Polka music. Did I miss the memo? It starts lightening all around us. What am I doing? I turn the corner and a wall of wind hits me. 30-40 mph wind with rain made for a horrible sandblasting-water-in-your-face race. It cannot get any colder, any wetter or any more miserable. There is no quitting.
"No problem! I got this."
I round the last corner and make my way down the homestretch. As I near the finish line, there is no one in sight. I know I am slow, but I did not realize that I was that slow, people left. I made it across the finish line and completed all three of my goals: Do not be last, finish under an hour…and just finish.
I joke that I am not a runner; I am more of a jogger. A fast walker can keep up with me, or in some cases, a man dressed in a bumblebee costume. I will be back again next year - rain or shine.